Sixteenth Annual Summer Interdisciplinary Conference
The Interlaken/Grindelwald area offers a wide variety of spectacular outdoor activities, ranging from tourism and viewpoints to high adventure. Take a look at:Interlaken Region Activities
On this site especially take note of the links under 'Summer Excursions: Mountains', and 'Summer Sports and Adventure'.
For Grindelwald see:
The Interlaken/Grindelwald area is renowned for hiking and offers thousands of venues ranging from simple hikes with little difficulty (including walks along the shores of Brienz and Thun and river Aare) but with incredible views to non-technical but difficult and long climbs to local peaks with even more dramatic views. Some of the hikes are accessed by car, train, or cable car, giving ready access to the higher elevation hikes, so that they can be accomplished in time to return for the afternoon talks.
For the somewhat adventurous attendees we offer guided hikes/scrambles to some of the local mountain peaks, guided by attendee and ASIC speaker Professor Harald Atmanspacher from ETH Zurich; he is a licensed mountain guide and quite familiar with the area. His guiding rates will be standard and split among those who decide to use his services each day.
Via Ferrata are paths along and between cliff faces and peaks that are protected by cables and ladders affixed to the mountainsides. The used wears a harness and slings with carabiners, and attaches these to the cables, thereby providing complete protection in conditions that would otherwise be limited to technical rock climbers. These vary in length and difficulty but are safe enough that groups of local children often use these for excursions on holiday, often with an adult leader.
There are quite a few Via Ferrata in the area (if not quite so many as in Italy), and are highly recommended as somewhat more spectacular alternatives to hiking.
MOUNTAIN BIKING AND ROAD BIKING
There are very large numbers of venues for road biking and mountain biking in the area, all giving the same spectacular views offered by hiking and Via Ferrata.
The Grindelwald area is known more for hiking and mountaineering rather than sport climbing (e.g. the Eiger, Jungfrau, etc). Although the area is famous for mountaineering, there are almost an uncountable number of excellent rock climbing venues that are close enough to Interlaken to be used for day climbing. These venues offer both single and multipitch routes at all levels of difficulty, and a variety of rock types. See: https://www.timeoutdoors.com/trips/Switzerland/rock-climbing-in-the-Swiss-Alps. For a comprehensive map of the venues see: http://climbingaway.fr/en/climbing-areas/luegibruggli
As usual we will offer at least one and probably two group climbing days, where we invite all climbers to come regardless of experience. We choose a scenic area with a variety of single pitch climbs. The guides set up top ropes are on easy climbs and introduce first timers and novices to rock climbing. The better climbers move to somewhat more challenging climbs in the same area.
There is a climbing shop on the ground floor of the Interlaken Indoor Climbing gym, just 1.5 blocks from our hotel at Kletterhalle Interlaken AG Jungfraustrasse 44.
There are numerous accessible peaks in the area of Interlaken and Grindelwald, and nearby valleys. Many can be reached in day trips by a combination of hiking and/or scrambling (Professor Harald Atmanspacher will be offering several tours). However the famous and very high altitude peaks such as the Eiger and Jungfrau are long, technical, committing, require a guide and ropes, and generally would not be suitable for conference days, but rather attempted on days prior to or after the conference.
Canyoning is suitable for beginners with no experience but is an exciting and enjoyable outing. One wears a wetsuit to insure warmth, then enters a stream in a narrow canyon high in the mountains. Then one descends the stream, by walking, scrambling, floating, and sliding, whenever conditions allow. When cliffs are encountered the guide lowers the client on a rope.
This is a sport suitable for all ages, albeit some of the more serious whitewater situations might require older and more experienced rafters.
For those not experienced in this sport it is best to try tandem parasailing with a guide as expert. This is a truly wonderful experience. One lifts off from a high peak or cliff in the area, and floats about with a large parasail, rising on thermal drafts (as do the birds) and offering incredible views of the local scenery as one floats about in complete calm and quiet.
Some of the other adventure sports available include Skydiving, Bungee Jumps, and Wing Suit Flying. Of course there are also a variety of regular sports, including those on or in the lakes: swimming, sailing, and boating.